Tuniq Miniplant 950watt Power Supply

We know Tuniq can produce an excellent performing product when it comes to heatsinks; can they do the same with PSUs?

@TweakTown
Published Tue, Jan 22 2008 11:00 PM CST   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 7:04 PM CST
Manufacturer: none

Introduction






For many enthusiasts and builders, Tuniq may not be a familiar name. This name is a subsidiary of Sunbeam, a company that has been catering to modders for some time now. According to the Tuniq website, these folks consider themselves being "in the fashion business of the computing industry". Simply put, they are a company that puts out a product line aimed toward the enthusiasts, overclockers and modders.

Enter the Tuniq Miniplant, a 950 watt power supply that is aimed at those who want that extra kick for a performance level system. There are, however, many high-end power supplies currently on the market so our goal is to help you determine if this product is capable of putting out quality power in your own system.

So kick up your heels as we delve into the Tuniq Miniplant. Is it worth consideration as your next upgrade? Let's find out.

In The Box






This Tuniq model is a standard sized unit so fitting it into your existing enclosure should be no problem. It doesn't offer a modular design, but it does make sure to wrap all wiring harnesses in a mesh material to make cable management easier.

As far as power ratings are concerned, you get a very workable level across all rails. The 3.3v rail is rated at 24A and the 5v rail is rated at 30A with a maximum output from these two rails rated at 170 watts. There are four 12v rails rated at 20A each, so you also have a pretty hefty main power rail for your add-on cards and such. Maximum output from the 12v rails is rated at 810 watts.

Also included in this package is a supply of zip ties for cable management and two adapters that convert the PCI-E8 connectors to standard PCI-E. This allows those who may not be ready to upgrade to the newer video cards to still feed a multi-GPU setup.



Like most models hitting the market today, the exterior panel has very little in the way of features. This makes more room for cooling, a growing concern with modern power supplies. This mesh panel allows for large amounts of air to travel through the casing and keep the internal components cool.



Feeding that mesh exhaust area is a large 135mm fan. It is a variable speed fan that automatically increases speed (and airflow) when the unit warms up. While never very loud, when it is running at system idle speeds you simply cannot heat it. It is a very silent fan and will go well in a box with low sound as a primary concern. It is not totally silent under load, but it is not very loud at any time.



As noted above, this model is not a modular design. While it is a nice feature to have, it is not that important to many. To make certain that things run smoothly, you will notice that there is both a plastic grommet protecting the wiring harness as well as the mesh material going into the housing itself. This gives maximum protection to the wires and presents the least chance possible for wear to cause contact between the metal enclosure and any bare wires.



When it comes to hooking up your components to this new PSU, there is a good deal of flexibility and also a lot of room for future upgrades. The primary connector is the 20+4-pin variety so you won't be left out on the cold if you happen to have an older motherboard that still requires a 20-pin main port. It also includes both 4-pin and 8-pin auxiliary connectors allowing for even more flexibility. For peripherals you get six Molex, two FDD, six SATA, two PCI-E and two PCI-E8 connectors. And don't forget, if you have a multiple GPU system and need four PCI-E connectors, there are the two adapters noted earlier to let you give it all the power it needs.

Testing




When it comes to testing a power supply, there are two courses to travel. One takes you down a path using a device to stress out the PSU and provide data regarding the power levels across all three rails. The second, and the one I make use of, utilizes an actual test system to give a more real-world account of what the power supply is capable of. While both methods have their merits, I prefer to use an actual computer to more closely resemble the manner of use that you, the potential customer, will put the product through.

That said, let's take a quick look at the test system. At the request of readers, I have beefed up the system to put a more realistic strain on the power supply.

GIGABYTE 965P-DS4 motherboard (Supplied by GIGABYTE)
Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 processor
2x 1024MB Corsair XMS2-8500-C5 memory (Supplied by Corsair)
GeCube X1900XTX graphics (Supplied by GeCube)
Sapphire X1900XT graphics (Supplied by Sapphire)
Western Digital 250GB SATA hard drive
2x Western Digital 160GB SATA hard drives
Western Digital 80GB hard drive
Sony 52x CD-ROM optical drive
Samsung 16x DVD-R optical drive
1x 200mm fan
2x 120mm fans
4x 80mm fans

While this isn't a Quad-GPU setup, we are certainly in the realm of having a system that is going to put a significant power drain on any power supply. Testing will consist of checking the power levels across all three rails at idle and again while the system is under stress. This should give us a good look at the capabilities of the power supply being tested.


Results


Since we have been testing power supplies, it has become a pretty common practice for manufacturers to set their products up to run a little over specification. This has a couple of purposes; first it ensures plenty of power when the unit is stressed and the rails drop off, and second it allows those wanting to get a bit more juice for their overclocking needs without hacking their mainboard.

This particular unit produced some of the highest voltage levels I have ever seen. Though nothing is at a range that would be detrimental, rest assured that you will have power to spare with this beast. Add to this the standard sized footprint and we have ourselves a very impressive power supply.

Final Thoughts




Most modern power supplies have begun marketing their "80+" power efficiency rating, and the Miniplant is no exception. It also has Active PFC, is SLI Ready and comes with a pretty standard 3-year warranty. While none of these things make this unit stand apart from the crowd, the price does. This Tuniq model comes in at the bottom end of the price range for a power supply with these features. Many in this category run at $300US or more, but you can pick up this one for about $250. Not too shabby for a PSU that has this much power and a very nice feature set.

For this low-end price you also get more power than just about any other power supply on the market. All voltage rails were putting out over their stated specifications and the potential for overclockers is excellent. Those few extra tenths of a volt can go some distance, particularly on the 3.3v rail with regards to the memory.

This power supply is also very quiet. At idle you won't hear it at all and at load it is still toward the quieter end of the noise category. Overall we have a very nice power supply that will make a nice addition to those looking for that extra kick in their system. While there are more powerful models available, you will be hard pressed to find a better value for your upgrading dollars if you are in the market for a performance level power supply.

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